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Metropolitan Opera Stage Manager Co-Authors Petition to Support Entertainment Industry Workers in the Worker Relief and Security Act

Stage Directions • Industry NewsTheatre Buzz • May 13, 2020

Metropolitan Opera Stage Manager, Theresa Ganley and Executive Stage Director, Paula Suozzi have started a petition on change.org to support entertainment industry workers in the Workers Relief and Security Act. In the petition Ganley and Suozzi write, “First, thank you for including entertainment industry workers in the CARES Act. We, the artists, craftspeople, and technicians of the Performing Arts Industry ask you to support the Worker Relief and Security Act bill released by Senators Michael Bennet (D-CO), and Jack Reed (D-RI), along with Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA) to extend the $600 weekly paycheck boost beyond July 31. We implore you to continue to extend those benefits to both salaried and independently contracted entertainment industry workers.”

The petition continues, “The performing arts industry has been devastated by the coronavirus. It is likely that the time when we can resume work and audiences can gather again with a sense of safety will be many months from now. Most of us who work in this industry were in the first wave of American workers to be laid off and will likely be the last to be phased back in. We ask you to remember that the artists, craftspeople and technicians who are suffering irrevocable hardship have been members of an industry that has been an 800-billion-dollar part of the nation’s economy.”

As it stands benefits for furloughed workers will last 30 days after the President’s Declaration of Emergency ends followed by a 13-week phase down. Benefits will end during the summer even though there is still uncertainty on whether or not theaters will be allowed to open this fall due to social distancing regulations.

The conclude, “Live performance is irreplaceable. For the arts to emerge from this unprecedented moment, the people who have put their full efforts into creation, need support during this time when we have been asked to pause. Because we will all need the inspiration that live performance and the cultural arts offer more than ever as we come out of this moment of national crisis, please support performing artists in The Worker Relief and Security Act.”

You can sign the petition here

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